The short-term rental giant paid around $200 million for the stealth AI company spearheaded by Siri founder Adam Cheyer and Siamak Hodjat, CNBC reported.
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Brian Chesky, co-founder and CEO of Airbnb, called GamePlanner.AI “special” and said it combines design, AI and community expertise – which he appeared to see as beneficial in terms of incorporation into Airbnb.
“AI will rapidly alter our world more than any other technology in our lifetime, but we need to ensure that it augments humanity in a positive way,” Chesky added. “Airbnb is one of the more humanistic companies in technology, and I believe that, together with Adam and his team, we can develop some of the best interfaces and practical applications for AI.”
Airbnb has already begun to incorporate AI into its business strategy, including large language models, machine learning and computer vision models.
Cheyer, co-founder and CEO of GamePlanner.AI, said the company was attracted to Airbnb as a result of its shared commitment of looking at how AI can strengthen human connection.
“Like Brian, I believe that without great design and community-based intelligence, AI can only achieve a fraction of its potential,” Cheyer said. “But with them, the sky’s the limit. The Airbnb team understands this better than anyone.”
Chesky has touched on his AI views on plenty of occasions – he has high hopes for its role in the world of travel, particularly for the industry’s digital players.
During the company’s third quarter earnings call this month, Chesky said he believes “AI is going to affect digital businesses more than brick-and-mortar businesses.” He added, “Airbnb and [online travel agencies] are probably going to benefit more quickly from AI than, say, a hotel will.”
In August, he summed it up: AI, in his mind, will serve as a “once-in-a-generation platform shift … bigger than mobile … akin to the internet.”
And GamePlanner.AI isn’t the only company Airbnb has acquired in an effort to bolster its business. In 2019, Airbnb moved to acquire HotelTonight with the idea to “accelerate our work to build an end-to-end travel platform that serves everyone.”